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1001 Odysseys

Created by Chris Cieslik

An adventure board game with storybooks full of journeys to visit new worlds, meet quirky aliens, and make many, many branching choices. 1-4 Players, 30-60 minutes per chapter.

Latest Updates from Our Project:

The Continuing Odysseys of the ...starship Odyssey
17 days ago – Wed, Nov 22, 2023 at 01:36:38 PM

Greetings adventurers! It's a fine fall day here in our portion of Earth as we bring you this update and prepare for the Gathering of Turkey and Turkey-Substitute Enthusiasts, an event that surely will stretch into the centuries beyond. 

First, I'd like to share Good News. Over the past [indeterminate quantity of time units] I've alluded to family illness and personal stuff (on this KS and on other updates elsewhere about Asmadi things) that's been difficult and time-consuming, and things on that front have taken a very positive turn and are going much better over the past several weeks. Kind thank yous to all who've expressed concern privately, publicly, or by carrier pigeon. I'm excited to get a lot more Game Stuff done than I have been able to. It's been a heck of a couple years for everyone. Let us all hope good things are on the way in the coming months! 

Art Update

Drawings for more of the surprising Passport Item cards are in the works, and we've also just wrapped up art of the Space Janitors for the Almanac to replace a very old illustration that was misrepresenting our small robots. As we've mentioned before, we're holding on to the Passport Item and Contact card illustrations so you can be surprised and delighted by them when you encounter them on your own adventure, but we're very happy with the latest batch. 

Writing Update

Writing continues in the later Chapters of our Stories, which means we're focused on making satisfying endings. There are a lot of threads that run through a Storybook, and it's very satisfying to see them come together at the conclusion. We're also writing entries for the Almanac so your Information Officer can tell you all about the wonderful things in Insula. 

One of the most important features of the Almanac we've been working on is its Sittability. Sittability is a measure of how likely a Cat is to sit on a particular book.

Space Engineer Ivy is carefully evaluating this prototype book

We're also making sure all the entries are reasonable to read out loud and fun for the group to learn about. The Information Officer is a bit of a unique role and we want it to be as fun as we've seen it be in many of our playtests! 

Publishing Update

At the start of this journey, we wrote most of one book and used it to estimate the length of each book that we planned to write. We wanted to provide many hours of fun and about 400 pages of story content in Odysseys, and we thought that would be 4 stories each of about 100 pages. Over the past months, we've been evaluating how long our chapters are, and what that means for printing the game. The chapters we've been writing have been largely longer / more in-depth than our initial ideas, and so we're adjusting a bit. 

With what we've written, we're going to be printing two longer stories of about 200 pages each in the 1001 Odysseys box.  We're now closing in on the 400 pages mark (last export test was 372), and will likely exceed it by a bit when all is said and done. In terms of schedule, we'd hoped to be print ready at the end of December, but we're still a couple months off. We are, however, ready to start playtesting!

 Playtesting: PAX Unplugged + Boston Area

Next weekend we will be at PAX Unplugged with a demo set of 1001 Odysseys (We'll be actively demoing Chapter 1 of each Story, with a few other test storybooks available to peek at). If you're there and want to say hello or play a chapter, please stop by! In particular, Story 2 Chapter 1 has not been seen by anyone outside our team so we're eager to see folks try it :)

In January, we're going to be doing on-site public playtesting here at Asmadi HQ (or maybe at a nearby site), and anyone who is local is welcome to join! We'll be posting signups for specific dates right after the New Year. We'll likely be doing Saturdays and one weeknight per week, and we're super excited to see people in person! 

We had hoped to do some remote playtesting, but right now we're focused on in-person. Apologies for the change on that, we just want to get this off to all of you as soon as we can! 

Pathway to Print, and a lil Art
4 months ago – Tue, Aug 22, 2023 at 02:14:12 PM

Greetings galactic citizens, I hope everyone is having a good summer! 

We've been focused primarily on writing and I wanted to share our planned schedule / roadmap to pushing the print button at the factory, which is the most important button. 

Progress of portions of the game that are mostly done:

  • Map Artwork (100%)
  • Chapter Header Artwork (100%)
  • Item + Contact Artwork (90%)
  • Almanac Artwork (80%)
  • Writing (85%)
  • Rulebook/Tutorial (50%)

The next big tasks that are still getting underway are the book + card layout. Most of this is data-driven and thus is largely automated, but it necessarily has to happen after the writing's completed. 

Our plan is to start locking in individual chapters in October, laying them out in Book Format (with all the little text boxes / etc lined up). As chapters are locked in, we'll lock-in the associated cards (locations, items, contacts) and print up test versions of those chapters for final testing. We'll be doing most of that internally, but if you're in the Boston area we'll have some public playtests available.  

Assuming that all goes well, we'll continue locking in chapters in November, show off a mostly print-ready game at PAX Unplugged at the start of December, and aim to push the print button in the weeks after the show, right around the end of the year. 

If we need to make some adjustments based on feedback, we'll take a bit of time to do that and keep everyone posted as to that process. 

Lil bit of Art

Since all the art progress recently has been on things that appear mid-game, it's spoily to share - but we're going to share a mysterious item below! What will it do? What secrets will it unlock? Is food involved? 

Soon you too can discover the [REDACTED] and all it's secrets. 

As always, we thank you for your support and your patience in our 73 year journey from the Delta Quadrant back to Ear...wait, wrong lost human vessel. 

Less Borg at least.

Numbers, Pages, Status
6 months ago – Thu, Jun 22, 2023 at 08:11:34 AM

Hey friends - this is going to be a quick, clear, simple update! As of June 1, we are up over 300 pages of content written (about 310 based on layout tests, and our goal is 400 pages), and continuing to work on writing to get this thing on its way to your tables. We wanted to be preparing for print right now, but our team have continued to have some rather garbage luck with illnesses and other non-work life interruptions, so the Spring progress was not at the full speed we aimed for.  We should be looking at locking-in layouts later this Summer.  Art-wise, things are close to wrapping up, just a few spot illustrations remain! Since all the art being worked on at this point is related to story-items later in the chapters/books, we're not showing all of that like we do with the maps, but trust me - it's cute! 

We're doing our best and as always, appreciate patience, good vibes, cats, and really are looking forward to putting this cool thing into your hands. I hope you all are having a good start of Summer and have had a fun Spring :)

Twenty Thousand Spoilers Under the Seas
8 months ago – Mon, Apr 10, 2023 at 02:02:37 PM

Ahoy there, space friends. We hope this missive finds you well. It's coming to you at a strange time in the development of this project, a moment in which all of the creative work we're doing is made up of spoilers for the game narrative. But fear not, steady friends! We've redacted any spoiler material below.

Writing Update

We are hard at work on filling in all of the writing for you and your crew to enjoy. Right now, we're working on Chapters 2, 3, and 4 (and an unnumbered Interlude) of one of the Storybooks where you get to explore [REDACTED].  Will you befriend the [REDACTED] to find out the cause of the [REDACTED], or would you rather travel through the [REDACTED] with a daring [REDACTED]? Maybe your plans will be disturbed by a [REDACTED]! Only time (and your choices) will tell!

Numbers-wise, we've worked on approximately 400 writing-entry-units (these vary from a few sentences to a couple paragraphs) since the start of December. Most of these are complete, though some still need an editing pass. Our acceleration of writing continues, and is in line with our goal of doing printing this year.  

Narrative Architecting Update

Between the outlining step of making a Chapter and the writing step of making a Chapter, a process exists where our Narrative Architect (Sarah) inputs the shape of a Chapter into the Database (read more about it here). Each Chapter takes about a week or two to input, with the computer playing it multiple times throughout the process. This lets Sarah easily spot the dreaded typos or uncommon edge cases so she can fix them quickly. 

Art and Design Update

The remaining illustrations that we're working on fall completely into the realm of spoilers, so we won't be posting them for you to look at. We've just completed eight of them, and we're currently working on four more! They are [REDACTED] and we want to [REDACTED] them so much! We think you'll enjoy them too!

Too much redacted? Fine! I can tell you that one of them is green, one is pink and segmented, another has triangles all over its forehead, and one is very space. Such space. Now you know everything. Sheesh.  

Graphic design work to bring the Passport and Storybooks to their final visual forms has been on a pause while we devote all our resources to the writing itself. Graphics will come back to the fore once the Narrative Architecting is complete. 

What's Next?

We're heads-down writing and doing writing work (and of course the DB architecting to allow the writers to input their writings). It's the thing we need to complete to get the game to you, and we're getting there! I hope everyone is having a good start of Spring, and gets to touch Space Grass soon. 


...actually, don't touch the Space Grass. Scans have just indicated it may be a sentient and decidedly shy unknown entity. 

Incoming Transmission for the Printer
11 months ago – Wed, Jan 25, 2023 at 10:28:19 AM

Greetings space adventurers! The Odysseys crew is back from our New Year holidays with some news for you. Today we have an exciting collaboration between electronics and paper to share with you, as well as some new introductions. 

Special Preview Update

 We brought Storybook 1 Chapter 1 with us to PAX Unplugged and had a great time playing it with a few of you at the convention. This was the first time in years that we've actually had an adventure from the game itself at a convention table, and it was delightful to see a full Chapter in action! Thanks to those of you who stopped by.

A top-down photograph shows a variety of gameplay components on a tabletop. A bright pink Plumplim plushie with green sprouts shows off everything. A large Map of Brumigum is very visible as a place that players can explore. A Mission Control Board has space for Momentum to track mission progress and focuses that will help you advance missions. Also shown are the Storybook, Rulebook, Almanac, and Passport Folder with Passport Sheets.
Plumplim the Plushie shows off the game components included in the Print and Play.

For the rest of you, we've prepared a packet of .pdf files! This Print and Play includes everything you'll need to enjoy "Welcome to Brumigum" at a table with your very own crew. You can download it from Plumplim.com on the Game tab: Click Here! Full spoiler warning! This is actual game content, and though we reserve the right to edit things if necessary, we're hoping that this story is very similar to what you will find in the final game.  

We're still working on a Tabletop Simulator mod, and we'll be releasing more chapters from the first story in PDF form for you to peruse over the first half of the year. We're not going to release everything as PDFs, but want to give you some things to peek at if you'd like a preview before the game is in your hands! 

Writing Update

We'd like to announce and welcome two new writers to our team! They're going to help us complete the text-based work on the game: 

Coral Alejandra Moore is a writer, an editor, a Jupiter fangirl, and a genetics nerd. She has written nonfiction about gaming and edited Dungeons and Dragons adventures for Kobold Press. Her short fiction has been published in Lightspeed Magazine, Mermaid's Monthly, and Diabolical Plots. Visit her online at http://www.coralmoore.com/

Anaea Lay lives in Chicago where she engages in a numinous love affair with the city. She haunts zoning committee meetings in search of high drama, makes annual pilgrimages to every branch of the public library, and hasn't been outside the city limits since March of 2020. Her lovebird familiar, Allium, stole her feathers from a T-rex. Anaea has written two games for Choice of Games, Gilded Rails, a railroad business sim with too many romance options, and Light Years Apart, a space opera romp with a deeply hidden Bohemian Rhapsody joke. You can find Anaea's short fiction in places such as Apex, Nightmare, and Beneath Ceaseless Skies, or upcoming at Zombies Need Brains Presents. For a full bibliography, check out her website, anaealay.com. To talk to her online, find @anaealay on Twitter, or look her up on the Dream Foundry discord server.

Ivy is a cat who is definitely helping write this update and not requesting food loudly and persistently.

We're excited to welcome them to Insula, and we're looking forward to discovering all of the wonderful details they add to the universe. They will be focusing their efforts on the next Storybook, writing from Chapter 1 through to the several endings. 

Art and Graphics Updates

Graphics work continues on the Passport Folder and the Almanac for the Information Officer's Role. We're also adjusting the look of the Storybook so that everything feels lively when you visit Insula. You can get a sneak peak at some of these changes in the Print and Play, but for the storybook in particular, we've kept that presentation simple so that it requires less colored ink to print.

The most spoiler-y bits of art are also coming in and looking very good! These things are going to make great additions to your Passport.

What's Next?

With more writers joining the team, we're looking to finish up the storywriting over the next several months, so that we can print the game and get it to you! The list of remaining art is getting smaller and smaller, and is down to just spot illustrations for Passport cards and achievements. I know it's been a tremendously long journey, but we're coming to the end of it. I appreciate the patience that so many of you have shown, and I understand the frustration of a loooooong project. We're doing our best, and I hope the table experience lives up to your expectations!